Pakistan raises hope of permanent reopening of Afghan border

ISLAMABAD: In this photo, Afghan nationals prepare to cross the Torkham border post in Pakistan en route to Afghanistan.—AP

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan is raising hopes of a permanent reopening of the country’s border with Afghanistan that was shut in the wake of deadly militant attacks last month. Pakistan’s foreign ministry spokesman, Nafees Zakaria, said yesterday that Islamabad is taking steps to resume normal trade and movement of people across the border. He says there are hopes the border would reopen “soon.”

The border’s closure came after a string of suicide attacks that killed more than 125 people. Islamabad claims the attacks were orchestrated from militant safe havens in Afghanistan. The closure has triggered hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost trade even as tensions remain high between the two neighbors. Earlier this month, Pakistan temporarily reopened the border for 48 hours to allow 35,000 stranded Afghans to return home.–AP

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